|After a longer than normal hiatus, the Backporch Cafe's Quiz Night returned this past Friday evening. A lively crowd* battled it out for the fame and prizes. With my regular team absent, I recruited a crack team of first timers to help with the pursuit. Through round one, we held our own. It turns out our knowledge of indigenous plants, world rivers, classic literature, and Antonio Banderas is above average. Round two was a bit of a suck fest for the Imperfect Ladies*. Out knowledge, or lack thereof, of current events, (post?)modern literature, the Clash, and starlets took us from second place to second-to-last. In a quiz tournament so heavily topicized*, you live and die by the topics.
Anyway, as always, it was a good time made even better by the other folks who played. Keep an eye out for the next go round. After all, the more, the merrier.
And for all of you who enjoy playing along, I'll share the two identification rounds. Above (click for larger image) are starlets. How many can you name? Or try your knowledge of indigenous plants. I'll post the answers in special hover code in the comments.
The Backporch Cafe's Quiz night has been covered before here and here.
|Sunday October 14 2007||File under: Anacortes, games|
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|Here is the second in the October Friday series of comics. I personally think this one is more interesting in the art (again, courtesy of Deanna) than in the comic part, but I'll leave it up to you. Maybe for those of you who do sit at a desk all day, it will ring true. (Previous comics: Organic vs. Inorganic and Dating a Jeopardy Writer)
Speaking of which, I somehow got dragged back into the grind this week. I'm doing some contract work for PhotoWorks, the company I used to work for down in Seattle. I conceived of this comic well before I rejoined the rat race*. It is rather fitting, though.
|Thursday October 11 2007||File under: comic|
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|If I told you that I have lived in the San Juan Islands for 18 years and have only seen Orca whales twice in the wild, would you believe me? Well, it's true, and I consider myself lucky to have seen them that much. Once was at WaPa where 60+* cruised by no more than a stone's throw from the beach. The other time was off the head at Rosario. Both were pretty spectacular.
This past weekend, I increased my orca sightings by 50%! Emily, who used to work at Island Adventures, managed to score us tickets to go out whale watching. Although it is on the top of some people's list when they come to Anacortes, I have yet to be out on a whale watching boat. I knew that I was in for a real treat.
The weather was quintessential for fall in the northwest. There was a chill to the air, wind gusts here and there, and non-rain moisture coming out of the air somehow, as it so mysteryously wont to do. I was afraid the weather would curtail the adventure, but, at least in my eyes, it only added to it. (Plus, it gave me the excuse to drink a whole thermos of hot chocolate!)
To read more (and see pictures!), click here.
|Tuesday October 9 2007||File under: Anacortes, pics|
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Every Friday this month, we here at BdW will be featuring a home brew comic written by
Click on the image to get a larger version.
|Thursday October 4 2007||File under: comic|
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|I'm happy to intoduce* troothpicks. Over 2 years have gone into developing a printing technique, phrases, logos, website, packaging, and more. I'm proud of the result. I think you will be impressed.
Troothpicks are essentially phrases (proverbs, fortunes, sayings) printed on toothpicks. The idea started as having something to fill the role of fortune cookies at non-Chinese restaurants and quickly blossomed into what it is today. Troothpicks are great for pre-dinner hors d'oeuvres, after dinner picking, and everything in between. They are also great for gifts, esp. for anyone you know who loves to entertain. You can get them for all occasions (birthday, holidays, graduations, etc.) or you can create your own custom picks with your business name on them or custom messages for your event. More information, photos, and how to order can be found at the website www.troothpicks.com.
For anyone who shares my enthusiasm for this product (and who couldn't?), I would love to have you tell your friends about the website. And if you have a non-themed* blog on which a post about a clever product that makes people smile might fit (Dave, Amanda, Andrew, Ryan, Myke, Blake, Saxtor*, I'm looking your way here), I would be ever so much appreciative if you found it in your hearts to maybe mention troothpicks in a post. I'd be happy to return the favor* if you ever have a word that needs spreading.
|Wednesday October 3 2007||File under: work, misc|
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|Huzzah huzzah! BdW has to come the rescue to save you all from another boring Monday*. That's right, folks, I am pleased to announce the debut of my eighth self-conceived*, home-coded nerd game. (To view all the games, be sure and check out the games page so conveniently listed on the left hand column of this very page.)
The goal of Link Letter is to create a chain of words, each one letter apart, starting at one word and working your way to another (hopefully the in-game instructions will be a little more articulate than that). Currently, there are 20 levels with the possibility of adding more levels (or maybe even separate tracks) later, so get some while the getting is good. Oh, and I've brought back the community high score board with this one, so you can fight tooth and nail to beat out Joe Mama.
|Sunday September 30 2007||File under: games, coding|
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|As summer is coming to an end, that also means an end to the [comfortable] scooter season. Time will tell if I am still able to use it as my prime form of transportation. It's been a fine run with the little guy. I often think back on some of the wonderful roads we've taken together (e.g. 395 and 1 as covered here before.) Recently. I was reminded of another spectucular road we have right here in the northwest, almost perfectly suited to Scoot Scoot. I've had occasion to ride it a few times recently, and I didn't think it was fair not giving it a shout out after calling attention to those other roads.
Chuckanut Dr. from the Skagit flats to Fairhaven has got to be one of the best roads of all time. I happened to hit it as the sun was going down on a beautiful autumn day. Returning on a clear night with the moon reflecting off the water was just as spectacular. While traveling via a scooter immerses you in the environment all the more, the road is worth driving in a car as well.
It's a road I recommend to friends visiting from out of town who are headed up to Bellingham, and it is a road to I recommend to all of you who might be passing that way.
|Saturday September 29 2007||File under: transportation, Anacortes|
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|As the days grow shorter and colder and the leaves change colors and drop from the trees, we are all reminded* that fall is here again. I, myself, couldn't be happier. Sure summer is nice with the long days and sunshine, but I'm always ready for that nip in the air that signifies one thing: hot chocolate season is here.
Besides drinking hot chocolate, fall lends itself to all sorts of things*. One of the things that I wasn't expecting to be excited about this year but was is knitting. Sitting down in the evening in front of some t.v. show that you don't really feel deserves your full attention* but is worth looking up for every now and again and just going to town on the knitting - yes, that is on the top of my list for this fall.
I am no knitting expert, mind you. I've still not yet learned how to purl. (Yeah, I know you say it is simple, but I just haven't learned yet, so back off!) I'm still a mostly scarves and hat guy (well, scarf and hats, to be precise), but perhaps this year I will expand into wash cloths and pot holders. Get ready family, there is going to be quite a bounty under the Christmas Crassula Ovata this year.
|Wednesday September 26 2007||File under: misc, pics|
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In hopes of making the People's Guide to Anacortes more accessible, I've recently acquired the domain name www.peoplesguidetoanacortes.com. Hopefully, this will make it easier for everyone to spread the word.
For those of you who don't remember the original post, the people's guide to Anacortes is a list of non-commercial activities on Fidalgo Island with an easy to use interface. It is geared towards travelers and residents alike who want to pass a day (or a week) enjoying the non-commercial (which also all happen to be free) things Anacortes has to offer.
I hope you have checked it out already or will do so soon. If you think it is a helpful service, spread the word to your friends and family who might be traveling this way.
|Tuesday September 25 2007||File under: Anacortes|
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Starbucks are everywhere. I've been around the world and seen them in some unexpected places (like the Forbidden City (although it looks like they are about to be banned)). While on the one hand, I think it represents a company that has found its niche by creating a product/service that people really want, I have a hard time getting behind some of their other business practices. Those with similar reservations might be interested in this tool, created by a friend, which helps you find alternative local coffee shops*. But I digress....
If you stand at 15th and Commercial Ave. in Anacortes, WA, you will be within 3 blocks of 3, count them, 3 Starbucks; two of them are within 1.5 blocks of each other! To be fair, 2 of the 3 are inside grocery stores, which, I guess, makes it a little easier to understand, but still...
Anyway, in all my travels, I haven't seen quite this density anywhere else. Does this make Anacortes an anomaly in that way? Can we start adding that to our travel brochures to entice those SUV driving, suburb dwellers (or whomever it is that keeps Starbucks going) to visit Anacortes?* Tell me, have you ever seen a higher number of Starbucks stores nestled together?
|Sunday September 23 2007||File under: Anacortes, misc|
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